Special Saturday WABC Meeting May 8

Join members and guests of the Washington Area Butterfly Club at a special Saturday morning meeting at the Audubon Naturalist Society in Chevy Chase, MD this Saturday, May 8, starting at 9:30 a.m.  Note that the time is 30 minutes earlier than our previous start times at ANS.

“THE MD RT 30 HAMPSTEAD BY PASS: THE PLANNING AND DESIGN OF A GREEN HIGHWAY”

Speaker:  Bill Branch

The Maryland Route 30 Bypass at Hampstead, Carroll County, Maryland is a long awaited safety and congestion relief project proposed by the Maryland State Highway Administration (MD SHA).  However, an unanticipated challenge arose during the final stages of design and prior to the submittal of state and federal environmental construction permit applications.  Late in 1997, the northern population of the bog turtle (Clemmys muhlenbergi), was listed as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act. The rural residential and agricultural lands surrounding Hampstead provide essential habitat for this rare turtle.  While many saw this as potential threat to the project, others saw this as an opportunity for a creative approach for habitat and species protection.

This presentation will discuss the process that was undertaken to study the potential conflicts between road construction and the protection of a federally threatened species, the engineering design decisions made in order to add additional protections for the turtle, and the development of a habitat management plan which insures the future protection of the bog turtle and its habitat. Also discussed will be additional environmental stewardship initiatives to benefit wildlife that have been taken as a result of bog turtle habitat protection including efforts to enhance a small population of Baltimore Checkerspot butterflies

Environmental issues and processes need not be a wedge driven between competing interests.  Inclusion and dialog throughout the coordination and design process is showing that a consensus can be built that not only results in a better project but also serves to insure the long term viability of a valuable natural resource.  This “green” highway approach may provide a blueprint for resolving similar conflicts in the future.

Bill Branch is as Environmental Analyst with the Maryland State Highway Administration’s Office of Environmental Design.  With a B.A. in Biology, Bill has 35 years of experience in providing solutions to the conflicts that arise between highway construction and environmental protection.  He has written on various topics including wetland creation, use of native plants in the landscape, the endangered species consultation process, and environmental stewardship.

The program will be held in the Teale Learning Center.  Directions:

Directions

From the Capital Beltway (I-495) exit Connecticut Ave. South (exit 33) toward Chevy Chase. From Connecticut Ave. go left on Manor Road, right on Jones Bridge Road, and left on Jones Mill Road to 8940. View Map Or, get directions with Google Maps

Woodend Sanctuary
8940 Jones Mill Road
Chevy Chase, Maryland 20815
301-652-9188

By Bicycle: You can reach Woodend on the hiker/biker trail in Rock Creek Stream Valley Park. Woodend adjoins the Park about one half mile north of the bridge across Rock Creek that carries the Capital Crescent Trail.

By Metro Rail and Metro Bus: Please be advised that it may be difficult to reach Woodend using public transportation–check schedules. From the Silver Spring Station or the Bethesda Station, take the J2 or J3 bus along East West highway. From either direction, exit the bus at Meadowbrook Lane. Walk north on the Rock Creek Hiker/Biker trail about one mile to the Woodend nature trail. During rush hour, the J1 bus stops at the intersection of Jones Bridge Road and Brierly Lane. Walk up the hill on Brierly Lane; the entrace to Woodend will be on your right. See http://www.wmata.com for J1, J2, J3 schedule information and a map of the routes.

Join members and guests of the Washington Area Butterfly Club at a special Saturday morning meeting at the Audubon Naturalist Society in Chevy Chase, MD this Saturday, May 8, starting at 9:30 a.m. Note that the time is 30 minute earlier than our previous start times at ANS.

“THE MD RT 30 HAMPSTEAD BY PASS: THE PLANNING AND DESIGN OF A GREEN HIGHWAY”

Speaker:  Bill Branch

The Maryland Route 30 Bypass at Hampstead, Carroll County, Maryland is a long awaited safety and congestion relief project proposed by the Maryland State Highway Administration (MD SHA).  However, an unanticipated challenge arose during the final stages of design and prior to the submittal of state and federal environmental construction permit applications.  Late in 1997, the northern population of the bog turtle (Clemmys muhlenbergi), was listed as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act. The rural residential and agricultural lands surrounding Hampstead provide essential habitat for this rare turtle.  While many saw this as potential threat to the project, others saw this as an opportunity for a creative approach for habitat and species protection.

This presentation will discuss the process that was undertaken to study the potential conflicts between road construction and the protection of a federally threatened species, the engineering design decisions made in order to add additional protections for the turtle, and the development of a habitat management plan which insures the future protection of the bog turtle and its habitat. Also discussed will be additional environmental stewardship initiatives to benefit wildlife that have been taken as a result of bog turtle habitat protection including efforts to enhance a small population of Baltimore Checkerspot butterflies

Environmental issues and processes need not be a wedge driven between competing interests.  Inclusion and dialog throughout the coordination and design process is showing that a consensus can be built that not only results in a better project but also serves to insure the long term viability of a valuable natural resource.  This “green” highway approach may provide a blueprint for resolving similar conflicts in the future.

Bill Branch is as Environmental Analyst with the Maryland State Highway Administration’s Office of Environmental Design.  With a B.A. in Biology, Bill has 35 years of experience in providing solutions to the conflicts that arise between highway construction and environmental protection.  He has written on various topics including wetland creation, use of native plants in the landscape, the endangered species consultation process, and environmental stewardship.

The program will be held in the Teale Learning Center.  Directions:

Directions

From the Capital Beltway (I-495) exit Connecticut Ave. South (exit 33) toward Chevy Chase. From Connecticut Ave. go left on Manor Road, right on Jones Bridge Road, and left on Jones Mill Road to 8940. View Map Or, get directions with Google Maps

Woodend Sanctuary
8940 Jones Mill Road
Chevy Chase, Maryland 20815
301-652-9188

click for printable version

By Bicycle: You can reach Woodend on the hiker/biker trail in Rock Creek Stream Valley Park. Woodend adjoins the Park about one half mile north of the bridge across Rock Creek that carries the Capital Crescent Trail.

By Metro Rail and Metro Bus: Please be advised that it may be difficult to reach Woodend using public transportation–check schedules. From the Silver Spring Station or the Bethesda Station, take the J2 or J3 bus along East West highway. From either direction, exit the bus at Meadowbrook Lane. Walk north on the Rock Creek Hiker/Biker trail about one mile to the Woodend nature trail. During rush hour, the J1 bus stops at the intersection of Jones Bridge Road and Brierly Lane. Walk up the hill on Brierly Lane; the entrace to Woodend will be on your right. See http://www.wmata.com for J1, J2, J3 schedule information and a map of the routes.

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